Biological Explanations of Schizophrenia

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  • Created on: 16-06-13 15:41

Genetic Factors

  • Gottsman found a 46% concordance rate in children with schizophrenia and schizophrenic parents 
  • However, it may just be family conflict that causes schizzophrenia (eg Laing's study)
  • Joseph found twin studies after 2001 had a concordance rate of 40.4% in MZ twins compared to about 7% in DZ twins
  • But, this may be due to environment as MZ twins are treated more similarly than DZ twins
  • Tieman et al - 11% with schizophrenic biological mothers had it too (adoption study)
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Biochemical Factors

  • Dopamine Hypothesis - dopamine transmitters fire too easily, abnormally high DZ receptors
  • Support by post-mortems showing high dopamine in schixophrenics
  • However, most of these were taking drugs that affected dopamine 
  • PET scans regarding schizophrenia and dopamine are yet to be coninving
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Neuroanatomical Factors

  • Tory found that schizophrenic patients had 15% larger brain ventricles
  • Negative symptoms of cognitive disturbances and poorer reactions to antipsychotic drugs
  • But there is huge overlap with the ventricle size of healthy patients and so the reliability is questioned 
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Synoptic Links

  • nature versus nurture
  • evolutionary psychology - schizophrenia found in remote countries 
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